Highlights of Railway Budget 2008-09

February 26th, 2008 - 4:27 pm ICT by admin  

(Seventh Lead)

New Delhi, Feb 26 (IANS) Following are the highlights of the Railway Budget 2008-09, presented in the Lok Sabha Tuesday by Railway Minister Lalu Prasad: Passenger fares reduced across the board

Second class fares for journeys over 50 km to cost 5 percent less

Sleeper fares down by 5 percent

AC III-tier fares cut by 2 percent

AC II-tier fares reduced 4 percent

AC first class fares down 7 percent

Freight charges for petrol and diesel cut by 5 percent

53 new trains to be introduced

10 garib raths (low cost AC trains) to be launched

Licensed porters to be absorbed as Class IV employees

Safety plan for railways, closed circuit TVs on stations

Rs.2.5 trillion for technical modernisation

Free season tickets to girl students till graduation

50 percent concession for AIDS patients, senior women citizens and Ashok Chakra awardees

Arrival time to be printed on tickets

Wait-listed e-tickets to be introduced

Tickets to be confirmed through mobile phones

20,000 km of high-density network planned

30 major stations to have multi-level platforms

Rs.400 billion investment in commercialising vacant railway land

To acquire land for new projects

New rail coach factory in Kerala

Energy conservation by replacing 600,000 bulbs with compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs)

2,500 old signals to be replaced by railways

All level crossings to be manned

Staff benefit fund to be increased by 10 times this fiscal

Only stainless steel coaches to be made from now on

Many Rajdhani trains extended to cover more destinations

Rajdhani and Shatabdi trains to have new coaches by 2011

Hospital trains to be introduced with healthcare and operating facilities

16,548 km of railway track to be replaced

1,000 over-bridges to be built with 50 percent participation by states

Railways to build cargo terminals in 50 major locations

Private companies can have their own cargo terminals on railway land

Wagon leasing policy introduced to facilitate business

Additional Rs.200 billion earned on freight services

790 tonnes payload or weight per freight train target achieved

Payload to go up 78 percent by increasing wagons to 58 from 40

15,000 freight wagons to be added

470 engines to be added in 2008-09

15,000 automated ticket machines by 2009

Smartcard technology for ticketing system

Rs.40 billion to be spent on green toilets

More trains in peak season

Rs.250 billion in profits in 2007-08

New earnings of 21 percent in 2007-08

Rs.300 billion to be spent on network expansion

Rs.492.50 billion invested in new projects

Cash surplus in 2007-08 at Rs.250 billion

Operating ratio a favourable 76 percent

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